The History of Fern Resort ~ Up to 1895


Fern - A Namesake
A log cabin built on fern covered rocks, inhabited by a hermit, was known as "Fern Cottage" by the residents of the Orillia area in 1867. Upon the hermit's death, the McBain family built their home on the same site as the tumble-down cabin. Although she had 11 children to care for, warm, hospitable Mrs. McBain could always make room for visitors at her table. In the spring of 1894, Mrs. McBain's kindness was to begin the growth of a flourishing summer resort.

The Discovery - Resort by Accident
A stagecoach en route to Longford Mills, then an important rail centre on the Trent Waterway System, broke down three and a half miles from its destination, at the end of the road to the McBain house. Mr. Weaver, a passenger from Buffalo, asked for shelter for the night for the group of American travellers and received a warm welcome and aid from the McBain family.

Fern Resort History
OWNER: Mr. & Mrs. John McBain
STAFF: McBain family & children
SEASON: 3 weeks
ROOMS: 0, just 2 camp sites cleared by John
HEAD CHEF: Mrs. McBain invited the Weavers over for dinner on Sundays
PRICE: $0.00